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Nysha's New Creators for November - posted on 1st Dec 2017 at 10:00 AM
Replies: 219 (Who?), Viewed: 102003 times.
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Scholar
#51 Old 9th Jun 2010 at 3:36 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by fakepeeps7
So? A small number can end up having a lot of influence. Just look at the Nazis...

There were over 300,000 Jedi in England in Wales in 2001. That means they outnumbered Sikhs, Jews, and Buddhists. Of course, a number of those people may have listed their religion as "Jedi" just to make a point. But still, that's a lot more than a "few thousand" people!

Now thats a cool religion. Skip the spaghetti monster, Jedi is cooler. May the force be with you.


"When the moon is in the seventh house
And Jupiter aligns with Mars
Then peace will guide the planets
And love will steer the stars"
Field Researcher
#52 Old 9th Jun 2010 at 11:20 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vanito
Now thats a cool religion. Skip the spaghetti monster, Jedi is cooler. May the force be with you.


There was a news story a while ago about a Jedi who went into a store and refused to remove his hood. Oh, here it is:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...humiliated.html

I love the store guy's response: "Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda and Luke Skywalker all appeared hoodless without ever going over to the Dark Side"

But I believe your blasphemy may get you probed by a noodly appendage. RAmen.
Scholar
#53 Old 9th Jun 2010 at 11:58 PM
Hey, the Cult of Cthulhu is so much cooler. Cthulhu ftagn. :D
Scholar
#54 Old 18th Jun 2010 at 4:49 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by grumpy_otter
There was a news story a while ago about a Jedi who went into a store and refused to remove his hood. Oh, here it is:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...humiliated.html

I love the store guy's response: "Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda and Luke Skywalker all appeared hoodless without ever going over to the Dark Side"
.

That means the emperor ahs his followers would still be emotionally humiliated. I protest.


"When the moon is in the seventh house
And Jupiter aligns with Mars
Then peace will guide the planets
And love will steer the stars"
Test Subject
#55 Old 22nd Jun 2010 at 8:23 AM
Personally i think the only solution to politicis is to fire everybody. I myself would prefer if it was from a cannon into the middle of the Atlantic, the problem is shit floats so they will eventually wash back up.

The best thing to do is to as a nation decide that not a single republican or democrat gets elected, oh and you may as well forget about the "I am an independant" thing because once exposed to the taint of either political party you are forever tainted. I mean seriously how bad can some school teacher from Jerkwater or Bumfuck Nowhere USA screw up the already broken system. If this is what we can expect from the "Proffesionals" 11 trillion dollars in debt and rising, obstructionist policies, obtrusive corporate influence, legalized bribery (campaign contributions) i asked myself how bad could a novice do? WoW less debt more fiscal responsibility, common sense legislation, removal of corporate influence, criminalization of bribery (wait that is already illegal) sure it is a possibility, but one must ask oneself could it really be any worse?

Asai
Scholar
#56 Old 22nd Jun 2010 at 12:13 PM
Asai, no offense or anything, but...

That kind of thinking is part of the problem. Let's fire everybody! Oh? So you want to fire those few good politicians as well? And don't give me any bullshit about "how there are none." I watch politics every damn day. They are there.

Sen. Debbie Stabenow, Sen. Al Franken, Sen. Bernie Sanders, just to name a few.

What would firing them all honestly accomplish except temporary emotional relief? There's a reason why we have political parties; it happens. People of similar ideas tend to group together, that's just how we are. The fact that political parties formed was inevitable. "Fire them all," I find to be incredibly naive.

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
Scholar
#57 Old 22nd Jun 2010 at 12:39 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by asai
Personally i think the only solution to politicis is to fire everybody. I myself would prefer if it was from a cannon into the middle of the Atlantic, the problem is shit floats so they will eventually wash back up.

The best thing to do is to as a nation decide that not a single republican or democrat gets elected, oh and you may as well forget about the "I am an independant" thing because once exposed to the taint of either political party you are forever tainted. I mean seriously how bad can some school teacher from Jerkwater or Bumfuck Nowhere USA screw up the already broken system. If this is what we can expect from the "Proffesionals" 11 trillion dollars in debt and rising, obstructionist policies, obtrusive corporate influence, legalized bribery (campaign contributions) i asked myself how bad could a novice do? WoW less debt more fiscal responsibility, common sense legislation, removal of corporate influence, criminalization of bribery (wait that is already illegal) sure it is a possibility, but one must ask oneself could it really be any worse?

Asai

Go live in europe.


"When the moon is in the seventh house
And Jupiter aligns with Mars
Then peace will guide the planets
And love will steer the stars"
Scholar
#58 Old 22nd Jun 2010 at 5:11 PM
I think we'd be better off having a random pool of people selected for office. It would prevent people from having to return favors to special interest groups and it would provide a more balanced picture of the political makeup of the country. Most people are moderate, but it's mainly the extremists who get elected. This would solve that problem.
Scholar
#59 Old 22nd Jun 2010 at 9:31 PM
@Oaktree

To be honest, I really don't see how that would help any. First of all, what if someone gets picked who is absolutely unqualified for such offices? Nor do I see how that would balance anything. More random, yes. More balanced? Not necessarily.

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
Scholar
#60 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 12:14 AM
If one person gets picked who is a total moron, there will still be other people there to balance against his voting. It's like Congress - it works best when there is a pretty even mixture of both parties because then the really crazy stuff doesn't go through, but the stuff that is really necessary and that both parties can agree on will. Random selection is likely to provide a pretty even mixture. The problem with the current system is that the sort of person who wants to run for office is almost always power-hungry and corrupt. They don't listen to the needs or the opinions of the common person. Our current Congress is a good example. The healthcare bill was wildly unpopular for varying reasons from people all across the political spectrum, but it was passed anyway. Trying to make Congressmen accountable to the people has not worked in the past. Making the people the Congressmen might just work.
Field Researcher
#61 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 12:19 PM
I think that's a great idea. I've often thought representatives should be selected sort of like jury duty--and it IS a duty, one that can't be refused.
Theorist
#62 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 1:37 PM
You think the sort of people who show up for jury duty would make good laws and should be trusted with being allowed to legislate away tax money? There are already crazy people in Congress, but I shudder to think of what a random sample of the US would produce. I cringe at continually having to educate average Americans to the level of comprehension for specialized committees, to say nothing about what anyone would do with allowing random Americans the sort of legislative access to things like security.

The average American, or average citizen anywhere really, isn't anymore equipped for running a country better than a politician than you'd want to suggest randomly selecting corporate CEOs from the population. In the best of times perhaps you'd get a sort of status quo, but the worst... the worst would be radical Constitutional changes from the nuthouse, emptying the budget for UFOs, defunding the military, theocratic movements... I'm not suggesting we don't see bits of these sorts of things already, but then we still have what amounts to be a professional core of politicians that I think, most of the time anyways, understand that these things are often symbolic gestures. The average doesn't understand symbolism. It understands reality television.

Even jury pools are carefully vetted by professionals. Who would vet away potential nutjob members of your random Congress? If they existed those would be the people truly in power, if they didn't exist then chaos.
Scholar
#63 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 7:14 PM
If people were better educated about the political system in school, I don't think there would be a problem. The average person has a job and is capable of doing that job at least to the minimum level of competency. Running the country is another type of job. If people are given the proper training, they will be able to apply that training. Yes, there will be the occasional idiot or crazy who wants to do something that would be truly catastrophic, but there wouldn't be a whole Congress made up of idiots and crazies and the rest of Congress would prevent those crazy ideas from passing.

And I had jury duty recently. I wasn't selected (there was a potential bias, though I don't believe it was a serious one), but I talked to my fellow potential jurors a little and most of them seemed to be rather intelligent people. There was one lady that I talked to who wasn't very bright, but she wasn't batshit insane, either. I hear a lot of people express the opinion that people in general are stupid sheep. I disagree. I think that people are capable of independent thought. Sometimes mob mentality will get in the way, but overall, people aren't helpless when it comes to thinking.
Site Helper
#64 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 7:31 PM
Unfortunately, such an idea would only work if the majority of people were compassionate, tolerant, and intelligent. Judging by all the whining against health care reform, the fact that homosexuals still can't get married in most states, and the fact that most people's intelligence is decidedly average (by definition), I doubt having a random group of people running the country would work. A compassionate, tolerant, intelligent person doesn't want to be led by the opposite (and vice versa).

You'd end up with just as many complaints as with the current system... but you'd probably also be worse off in some aspects.
Scholar
#65 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 7:39 PM
I'm not saying it would be perfect. There would be a lot of social issues (such as homosexual marriage) that would be slow to change. But there would be less corruption. Less of the federal budget would go to pork barrel spending and there would be fewer laws passed at the behest of large corporations or powerful interest groups. And I'm not saying that most people are of above average intellect (as that would be a statistical impossibility), but that average intellect is not bad. People of average intellect are still capable of thinking for themselves and doing a job properly.
Theorist
#66 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 7:57 PM
I'm unmoved by suggestions that idiots could be polished into gemstones in a world with American Idol and The Bachelor. If such a process is possible then surely it is already present - our last President, for example, seemed quite apparently an average person of average inclinations who suffered through a grueling laundering to get elected and then found himself over his head surrounded by ambitious, uncooperative advisers. Your argument is that this process would be minimized in impact because there are so many people in Congress, but I suggest it's already going on in Congress all the time. All your suggestion would do is force the process to attempt to produce statesmen in an even shorter window of opportunity, and remove entirely any suggestion of preparation for the job in favor of a National Congressional Powerball Lottery or something.

The idea seems to be that "anyone can be a politician" and that's a fine sentiment for school children for the urge to apply themselves, but I reject the idea that running the sorts of teams that even the least of Congresspersons are adept at isn't something everyone's either capable of or inclined to. They all might occasionally seem like boneheads, but I think they're highly specialized boneheads these days, and specialization needs special education of the sort that most of these guys either get from hobnobbing with politicians naturally (the wealthy), being raised in a political environment (Bush, the Kennedy family), and/or by ambitiously learning by scrapping it out from lesser positions to the higher ones (Obama.)

Worse, you'd be essentially putting these untrained random people in charge of the system to elect themselves and be removing the public check on the process. Since we'd no longer be a democracy at all, a semi-coherent random Congress could rewrite the election laws to keep themselves in power longer, or ensure power blocs of continuous power. There's always a risk of that even today, but we've got elections. Without elections and the general noise of a lack of coherency in the legislature involved I'm not sure anyone would even notice a "stealth attack" of Congressional reform in your proposed system.

Congress is our most powerful branch of government. This notion would be steps both emasculate it and employ vastly unrestricted power to people unprepared for it. Revolution? Stop paying the military. Congress can do that. Kick out the President? Yep, Congress can do that and take the lesser step of just kicking him out of the White House, along with dissolving all courts except for the state courts and USSC. A few bad laws, even worse parsed than some of the ones we already have because they're written by amateurs, could strangle the country.
Site Helper
#67 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 8:14 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
People of average intellect are still capable of thinking for themselves and doing a job properly.


Some of them, yes.

But I still prefer to be led by smart people. It's just like with anything else. If I'm learning to become a brain surgeon, I don't want my teacher to be a barely literate butcher who graduated at the bottom of his class.

What the hell is wrong with being smart? I've noticed this attitude coming out of America in recent years. You'd think being educated and having a high IQ were bad things.
Scholar
#68 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 9:41 PM
I'm not saying there is anything wrong with being smart. I have a high IQ, so it would be a little hypocritical (not to mention nonsensical) for me to say there's something wrong with it. My point is that I think lawmaking is the sort of job that can be done by people of average intelligence. Government runs things according to the wishes of the average person, so I think the average person would be capable of implementing those laws. It certainly doesn't hurt to have people of above-average intelligence, I was simply pointing out that most of the people running the government in such a system would be average. Quite a few of our current politicians are pretty average, but simply trained for the job, so I don't think there is much of a difference.

Mistermook: I don't think the idea of "anyone can be a politician" is simply a lie told to school children. Pretty much all it takes at the moment are charisma, money, and connections, and all three of these things would be unimportant if the election process were removed. Further, I don't think that people are incapable of generalization. To use myself as an example: I study biochemistry because I want to be a doctor someday. I don't put aside every other subject as unimportant, though. I also study philosophy, English, music, economics, physics, and a variety of other subjects. I'm not an expert in any of these other fields, but it doesn't mean that I can't hold my own in a discussion, and with a little more training, I could probably work in any of those fields. I'm not saying that we throw people in unprepared; I said that there would need to be a better government education in school, or some other type of training for those selected.

I also think that most of the need for specialization is due to the stupid way in which our government works today. Most of the laws are written in exceedingly dense lawyer-speak, and then the politicians rarely even read the bills before voting on them. There are also thousands of unnecessary laws on the books. I think we need plain language in our legislation and far fewer laws. In such a system, there wouldn't need to be so much time spent on training legislators. Legislators should mostly have very little to do in the first place. We don't need thousands of laws, we just need the occasional law passed when a new situation that isn't covered in the current laws arises. This doesn't happen that often. Further, the old laws can often be amended to include new situations. Governmental positions would mostly be rather boring under ideal circumstances.
Scholar
#69 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 9:55 PM Last edited by Nekowolf : 24th Jun 2010 at 12:00 AM. Reason: Fixed a typo
Good politicians though, well...it's not about intellect, not entirely, but education. Good politicians are educated about what it is they are for and against, and understanding legalese would help immensely, since that is what they'll be confronting in legislation.

Anyone can be a politician. But you need to go above and beyond "average" to be a great politician. Something there are too few of on the Left, and even fewer of on the Right (at least in Congress).

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
Theorist
#70 Old 23rd Jun 2010 at 11:58 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
Pretty much all it takes at the moment are charisma, money, and connections, and all three of these things would be unimportant if the election process were removed.

And I think you're wrong, because I think those things are needed for a specific reason in our society that's not widely analyzed. If you had a Congress without them they'd have to develop them, and the presence of even a single member with an advantage in any of those areas would be even more powerful an influence in government than it already does because his or her opponents would literally be starting from scratch trying wield that sort of power against the person or they'd be so inexperienced and inefficient in using power that they'd suck at it to everyone in the country's detriment.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
Further, I don't think that people are incapable of generalization.

Of course we are capable of generalizing. I'm not speaking about an educational level specialization though, I'm talking about the specialization people use to tell you they're not going to hire you because they want people with experience. If you're still in school you may scoff, but it's a BIG DEAL. Knowing the way the government works, the way political structures in large organizations operate, being able to instantly look at an org chart and know which one of the people under the other person should be the weak link in the organization and which one you convince and sudden his boss changes his mind?

Sure, you can teach towards that sort of thing, but an awful lot of figuring that sort of thing out comes from doing it. A lot. It's a specialization in a specific sort of organization. Sure, government's got similarities with other large organizations, but how many people really have the specialization in managing large organizations we're talking about either? These are the sorts of people we're already extracting politicians from the ranks of.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
I'm not saying that we throw people in unprepared; I said that there would need to be a better government education in school, or some other type of training for those selected.

And I say that the sort of education you're so casually dismissing isn't something that makes sense to teach to everyone just because they might one day be in your random guy Congress. It's not the sort of thing everyone's fit for, anymore than you want me to take me, who hated Biology, force me to sit through a bunch of Doctor classes and then tell me I've got to perform open heart surgery on people. I'd suck at it because I'd resist it, because it's not the sort of thing I'm interested in. It's not where my talents lie. It's not the sort of thing you just want to hand over to disinterested people on the basis of even an intense education and assume they're going to do a good job at it. It's too important for that. You want motivated self-starters who want to be there through the whole process. People who like playing with people's organs and stuff, not me - who doesn't give two craps about most people's organs or organs in general unless they're sauteed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
I also think that most of the need for specialization is due to the stupid way in which our government works today. Most of the laws are written in exceedingly dense lawyer-speak,

And this is a problem mostly because you're not a lawyer. You might as well argue that medical journals should be written more plainly, and physics texts of all levels written for laymen. Lawyers are the people who will be using the law, therefore the laws are written for lawyers. Legalese isn't deliberately obtuse, it's overly specific most of the time. For a reason - because you don't want to write a law banning pop tarts that bans breakfast food.

That you've got an issue with it suggest that you don't understand it, but if you understood it you'd understand why it had to be written than way. I'm no lawyer, but I don't have a problem making my way through a law. They're usually less dense and deliberately vague than your average big corporation contract.

"Easy to read" a lot of times means "open to many different interpretations." You don't want that, even though you get them anyways because covering every possible case of something is hard. You're going to be throwing innocent little lambs of neophytes into that arena and have them make laws? One of the first thing they'd have to do is ban lawyers and effectively destroy our justice system or they'd all be screwed. Of course destroying the justice system would screw all of us over, but that's essentially the sort of system you're advocating.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
and then the politicians rarely even read the bills before voting on them.

You think random average Congressperson will be a better reader? The only way they'd read a law is if Nicole Ritchie read them aloud while juggling on a reality television show. And she'd be doing it 24 hours a day. Politicians have aides to read and summarize, just like Generals have aides to summarize, and CEOs, etc. Average guy Congressperson won't have that staff, of course - or they likely won't have the effective team management skills to use them correctly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
There are also thousands of unnecessary laws on the books.

Straw man.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
we just need the occasional law passed when a new situation that isn't covered in the current laws arises. This doesn't happen that often.

It will happen a lot more once there's no continuity in Congress and there's a bunch of "simplified" laws without proper specifications on the books. Not to mention the crazy stuff that won't stop, but instead will get crazier, because the Congress won't be accountable to the people.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
Further, the old laws can often be amended to include new situations. Governmental positions would mostly be rather boring under ideal circumstances.

Government positions are always boring under ideal circumstances. There are never ideal circumstances. Such a notion is a fiction, a fantasy. If there's nothing to do at all then there's no need for the position at all, if there is a position then a crisis invents itself to justify the position.
Field Researcher
#71 Old 24th Jun 2010 at 1:10 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mistermook
I'm unmoved by suggestions that idiots could be polished into gemstones in a world with American Idol and The Bachelor.


I just got proof of reincarnation! Too bad this is the wrong thread. But there he is--ALEXANDER HAMILTON IS BACK!

All kidding aside--I do appreciate your points and think they are thoughtful, but truly--this is supposed to be a REPRESENTATIVE democracy. When was the last time you felt like somebody in congress had your back?

Most of the time, these people seem so out of touch with reality, it's scary.

And certainly, under the way things are currently set up, my proposal wouldn't work--but frankly, I think we need a revamp of the whole system.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fakepeeps7
Some of them, yes.

But I still prefer to be led by smart people.


And heere's John Adams!

(Just playing my reincarnation joke again--no offense meant)

Edit: Wouldn't y'all just love to see John Stewart as a Senator?
Field Researcher
DELETED POST
24th Jun 2010 at 1:13 AM
This message has been deleted by grumpy_otter. Reason: repeated post
Banned
#72 Old 24th Jun 2010 at 1:21 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mistermook
You think random average Congressperson will be a better reader? The only way they'd read a law is if Nicole Ritchie read them aloud while juggling on a reality television show. And she'd be doing it 24 hours a day. Politicians have aides to read and summarize, just like Generals have aides to summarize, and CEOs, etc. Average guy Congressperson won't have that staff, of course - or they likely won't have the effective team management skills to use them correctly.


While the random average person won't be a better reader, unless they just happened to be an english or lit major, when the majority of congress uses other people to read for them and summarize, are they really getting the full detail of the laws being put up for voting? I personally would feel better if ALL politicians were forced to read every single word of each bill before voting on it, yes it'll take time to read but I would be more comfortable knowing that they actually know what is being written into law without having someone read and summarize it for them. When one summarizes things will be left out, one person might read and summarize and leave out a few important parts while someone else may not.
Theorist
#73 Old 24th Jun 2010 at 2:58 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Safyre420
While the random average person won't be a better reader, unless they just happened to be an english or lit major, when the majority of congress uses other people to read for them and summarize, are they really getting the full detail of the laws being put up for voting? I personally would feel better if ALL politicians were forced to read every single word of each bill before voting on it, yes it'll take time to read but I would be more comfortable knowing that they actually know what is being written into law without having someone read and summarize it for them.

No one ever gets the full detail of a law until it's actually implemented and applied. You pass it and the public breaks it, it gets sent to the courts for review and revision, rinse, repeat. Again, going back to the paparazzi thread where I asked someone to write a law that limited free speech specifically for paparazzi and didn't impact other people, which got no reply. Making laws isn't something everyone just up and does. The easy ones are all pretty much on the books already and messing with them (as well-meaning people who couldn't understand them because they're not lawyers or have teams of lawyers to help them understand them available might) just screws things up in cascades.

I might be strongly opposed to Conservatives with a capital C in government, but being cautious and conservative with law-making isn't a bad thing. It's just social conservatism that's evil, and fiscal conservatism that's impractically optimistic. If you're going to propose to change a system that's functional, even if it has issues with the way it functions, you need to be absolutely positive you're not proposing a solution that's just going to compound the problems. Radical solutions take longer to hammer out the issues, and while that's happening in government it's usually regular people who suffer because of it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Safyre420
When one summarizes things will be left out, one person might read and summarize and leave out a few important parts while someone else may not.

Which is yet another reasons why sending people into such a solution without good team management, team building skills, and a veteran team that the person can trust is like dropping them into the jaws of a lion. Without those skills if they form a team, as they virtually must, that team could be managed by anyone.

...If we did it with this random Congressperson thing, we'd probably end up having standard proxies being sent in anyways. They wouldn't be elected, there wouldn't be any expectation of transparency, they might be wholly operated by lobbyists even, but so many people would be outside of their comfort zones, over their heads, I can't help but imagine that eventually that's the sort of thing we'd settle for. The "voting" being done would be in freshmen Congress members being wooed by blocs of people promising to do the hard work of government for the regular people. Like you search for a doctor to remove your tumor instead of figuring out how to do it yourself, or hire a lawyer to keep you out of prison. You'd make more money that way, and you could get together with blocs of other Congress members to waive it into law so you wouldn't have to do all this stuff.

And make no mistake: There's absolutely no way you could "set something up" to prevent this with any security. Congress can change any law, rewrite or suspend the Constitution, with enough votes. Congress has only the slimmest of checks and balances compared to the other branches of government, it's only really balanced by the contentiousness of its members. Force people to unite for laziness though, by giving them complex and unpleasant tasks?

Things such as that are perhaps the reason we fight wars instead of pursue diplomacy... easy solutions, passing the buck, hiring help? Those are easy decisions and people like to do those sorts of things - like instead of figuring out a way to inform the electorate, dismiss them entirely in favor of a lottery.
Scholar
#74 Old 24th Jun 2010 at 3:02 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by grumpy_otter
Edit: Wouldn't y'all just love to see John Stewart as a Senator?

I think I'd vote Colbert ^_~

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
Scholar
#75 Old 24th Jun 2010 at 5:27 AM
Mistermook: While you make many thoughtful points, I still don't agree with your insinuations that the average person is unintelligent and easily distracted. I can't really give you anything beyond my own experience, but, in my experience, most people are reasonably intelligent. And what does watching a television show say about someone's intelligence? Not everyone who watches reality tv is braindead. You're setting up a strawman, now.
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